Town and regional planning is a profession that promotes and manages change through the planning, design, implementation and management of public interventions in the development and use of land. These interventions can vary from site to supranational level, and aim to widen choice, promote equity, ensure sustainable human settlements and improve the quality of people's lives. The guiding motive of the profession is the generation of viable alternatives to existing settlement types.
At the current juncture in South Africa's history, town and regional planning is a key profession in the rectification of the spatial and other imbalances in both urban and rural areas, as well as the improvement of inefficient and underperforming living environments. The challenge of planning lies in the fact that different interests and expectations for the future are often contradictory and conflict-ridden. A professional approach that combines sensitivity, analytical and strategic skills is hence required to handle the various political, social, spatial, environmental and economic issues at stake.
At the Department, we pursue equitable and sustainable development of people through:
- Accredited undergraduate and postgraduate programmes in town and regional planning as professional qualifications;
- Active and constructive involvement of students and lecturers in community development and service;
- Academically rigorous and socially relevant research conducted by students and lecturers;
- Contracted service provision to local, provincial and national government as well as the private sector; and
- Accredited continued professional development (CPD) opportunities for planning professionals.
On this website you will find information about our academic offering, the Department and its staff, our research focus areas, photographs of student activities, and answers to frequently asked questions about what urban planning is, what planners do and where they work.
Please contact us should you require any additional information.